Browsing: India

Selected and must-read news from India. Includes latest breaking news, trending headlines and hot topics on nation, politics, society, business, sports etc.

India
No salads, fewer magazines to save costs: Air India staff suggests

Removing salads from meals for economy class passengers on international flights and carrying fewer copies of in-flight magazine on board are among the cost-saving tips from the staff of beleaguered Air India. These suggestions were made after Air India CMD Ashwani Lohani exhorted his senior executives to become “aggressive commercially and display a major spurt in revenues”. With government looking at disinvestment and louder calls against committing more taxpayers’ money into the carrier, Lohani in a recent internal communication remarked that the airlines’ huge debt made him “feel like a loser”. Following the communication, a senior airline official wrote to the CMD with staff feedback, including a cabin crew in-charge, on how salads often go a waste on international flights. “In my flight today, the CIC (cabin in-charge) was talking to me and suggested some ways to reduce costs. One was that in international flights in Y class (economy class),…

India
India releases official statement about Qatar diplomatic crisis

India’s Ministry of External Affairs (MEA) has released an official statement about the recent developments in Gulf region which was initiated by some countries cutting off diplomatic ties with Qatar. “India believes that peace and security in the Gulf are of paramount importance for the continued progress and prosperity of the countries in the region,” the statement said, urging all parties to solve differences through constructive dialogues. MEA reaffirmed that it is closely following the situation in the Gulf region and is in regular contact with regional countries. “Their authorities have assured us continued support for welfare and well-being of the resident Indian communities,” the statement said. MEA has advised Indian expatriates in the region to contact the Indian Embassy or Consulate concerned should they require assistance or advise consequent to the developing situation. Here is the full text of the official statement: India’s official statement following the recent developments…

India
Gulf countries assure India of welfare of diaspora amid Qatar crisis

India on Saturday said it is closely monitoring the situation in the Gulf where several countries led by Saudi Arabia have cut off diplomatic ties with Qatar and that the countries have assured continued support for the welfare and well-being of the large Indian diaspora. India also said that the countries should resolve their differences through dialogue. “We are closely following the emerging situation in the Gulf region in the wake of the recent decision by the Kingdom of Saudi Arabia and some other countries to break diplomatic relations with the State of Qatar,” the External Affairs Ministry said in a statement. “We are of the view that all parties should resolve their differences through a process of constructive dialogue and peaceful negotiations based on well-established international principles of mutual respect, sovereignty and non-interference in the internal affairs of other countries,” it said. Closely monitoring the situation The statement said…

India
Non-Resident Indians to adopt 500 villages in India

Non-resident Indians (NRIs) living in the US will adopt 500 villages in India as part of their effort to develop the rural areas of the county. A formal announcement in this regard would be made during the Big Ideas for Better India conference in Silicon Valley on July 1. Organised by the Overseas Volunteer for Better India (OVBI), spiritual leader Ravi Shankar will give keynote address at the event which is expected to be attended by over 1,000 influential NRI leaders, a statement said yesterday. These 500 villages have been selected based on the highest farmers suicide rates, high unemployment rates and need immediate support, said OVBI president Satej Chaudhary. “We are bringing together geoscientists, agricultural experts and entrepreneurs to help double the income of farmers by 2022,” he said. The event will address the most challenging problems being faced by India in agriculture, governance and human trafficking. Last year…

India
Qatar diplomatic crisis not a challenge for India, says Sushma Swaraj

India will not be impacted by some Gulf countries cutting off diplomatic ties with Qatar, India’s external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj said. Swaraj said India was trying to find out if any of its nationals is adversely impacted due to the development. “There is no challenge arising out of this for us. This is an internal matter of GCC (Gulf Cooperation Council Council). Our only concern is about Indians there. We are trying to find out if any Indians are stuck there,” she told reporters. She expressed hope that things will get normal within the GCC as such things have happened in the past as well. Kerala CM requests Govt to ensure NRI safety In letters to Prime Minister Narendra Modi and external affairs minister Sushma Swaraj, Kerala chief minister Pinarayi Vijayan has sought the Centre’s intervention to ensure safety of 6.5 lakh Indians, including Keralites, residing in Qatar. “As you are aware millions of…

India
India’s most powerful rocket launches satellite into orbit

India launched a communication satellite using its most powerful rocket on Monday, improving its prospects of winning a bigger share of the more than $300 billion global space industry and its hopes of a manned mission. The Geosynchronous Satellite Launch Vehicle (GSLV) Mk III, or “Fat Boy”, lifted off from the Sriharikota space centre in southern India at 5.28 p.m. (1158 GMT) in clear blue skies. At 3,136 kg (6,914 lb), or more than three tonnes and the height of a 13-storey building, the GSAT-19 satellite is the heaviest India has tried to put in orbit, the space agency said. The United States, Russia, China, Japan and European Space Agency have the capability to launch satellites weighing more than three tonnes. Prime Minister Narendra Modi congratulated the scientists behind the launch and said it took India closer to the next generation of launch capabilities. “The nation is proud,” he tweeted.…

India
After 22 years, India Govt to introduce new 1 Rupee currency note

The Reserve Bank of India (RBI) will soon circulate new currency notes of one rupee denomination, the central bank confirmed in a press release on Tuesday. The notes, which have already been printed by the Government of India, are legal tender under the Coinage Act, 2011. The existing currency notes in this denomination in circulation will also continue to be legal tender, the RBI stated. The Re 1 note was discontinued in 1994. The next year, Rs 2 and Rs 5 notes were also pulled out to free printing facilities for higher denomination notes. The new Re 1 note will be 9.7 by 8.3 cm and in a pink and green colour theme. Its previous avatar was of an indigo colour. The notes will have the signature of Rajiv Mehrishi, the Finance Secretary at the time, and current Economic Affairs Secretary Shaktikanta Das, who retires tomorrow. All other currency has the…

India
Now know the ‘livability’ of your favourite Indian city

You may soon get to know the ‘livability’ of your favourite Indian city with the Centre all set to launch the first ever ‘Livability Index’ next month. Under the initiative, 240 cities, including 100 Smart Cities and 53 other cities with a population of one million and above, will be assessed on 15 core parameters like governance, social infrastructure, education, health and safety and security. The ‘Livability Index’ will also take into account physical infrastructure like housing, open spaces, land use, energy and water availability, solid waste management and pollution, among others. “The index aims to promote a healthy competition among cities and towns in the country to focus their attention on improving governance and infrastructure availability,” Urban Development Ministry Secretary Rajiv Gauba was quoted as saying in a release here. He was addressing a workshop organised by the World Bank here on improving accountability of local governments. The Urban…

India
Veteran Bollywood actor Vinod Khanna passes away

Veteran Bollywood actor and politician Vinod Khanna died on Thursday morning after a long battle with cancer. He was 70. The actor, who was the most-sought after star in the 1970s and 1980s, was known for romantic roles. He’s survived by his wife, Kavita, his sons, Akshaye, Rahul, Shraddha and Sakshi. A statement from HN Reliance Foundation and Research Centre in Girgaon read: “Veteran actor and Member of Parliament Mr. Vinod Khanna, who was admitted to the Sir HN Reliance Foundation Hospital breathed his last at 11.20 am due to advanced bladder carcinoma.” Mr Khanna was taken to hospital some weeks ago, ostensibly to be treated for dehydration. His son Rahul Khanna told news agency PTI days after he was hospitalised, “Dad was hospitalised on Friday for severe dehydration. The situation was quickly brought under control, he’s doing much better and the doctors are looking to discharge him soon.” “Our…

India
50% travel concession: Air India lowers eligibility age

India’s national carrier Air India has lowered the age limit to 60 for availing travel concession under its scheme for senior citizens. As per the scheme, an Indian citizen who has attained the age of 60 on the date of commencement of journey is entitled to a 50 percent discount on the basic fare of an economy class seat, an Air India spokesperson confirmed. Earlier, the age limit for this offer was 63 years. This offer, however, is only valid for domestic travel. Those seeking to avail this scheme will have to produce a valid identity proof like voter identity card, passport, driving licence, or senior citizen card issued by Air India, among others. Published on 23 April 2017

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